Glyndwr graduate earns first paid commission with national theatre company
A young playwright who was inspired to write in Welsh while studying at Wrexham Glyndŵr University has taken a big step towards a career in theatre.
Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru has given Kallum Weyman their first paid commission, a short Welsh language play about the apocalypse.
“It’s crazy – I kind of wake up every day not believing that it’s happening,” they said.
“It’s such a fantastic opportunity with one of our national theatres.”
Kallum, originally from Deganwy, is drafting a play with the working title Bagiau Plastig Mutant (Mutant Plastic Bags), which focuses on two men in the aftermath of the end of the world.
“It’s basically a play about two men considering what it is to be alive if the world has ended,” they said.
“If they the only ones left, how do they keep going? Should they keep going?”
“It’s also about how much responsibility they have for the world itself. Is there a personal responsibility on the individual to consider the state of the world and what they are doing to be a part of it?”
“They’re so lovely and supportive every step of the way. My Welsh isn’t perfect but that’s not important,” they said.
“What’s important to them is my ideas and being able to express them in Welsh – and helping and guiding me to do so.”
The commission came after Kallum, who has autism and dyspraxia, previously received a bursary from Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru to develop 20 pages of a drama and a story outline.
Kallum has also been attending monthly writing circle with the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff, during which they have been developing a play that examines issues of LGBTQ+ and Welsh identity.
The aspiring writer earned a BA (Hons) Theatre, Television and Performance degree at WGU, before gaining an MA in Direction from Trinity St. David’s University in Cardiff.
They were full of praised for the support offered by lecturer Jenna Brook and programmed leader Elen Mai Nefydd.
They said: “I feel like the experience of working on different projects and the one-to-one guidance I had from my lecturers really gave me the confidence to go for things and have confidence in my ideas and my voice.
“I think I really developed a theatrical voice while at Glyndŵr. If I hadn’t had the opportunity to experiment at Glyndŵr, along with that guidance, I don’t think I’d be where I am at the moment.”
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